All of the components of the Digital Revolution, from silicon to software and on to the internet, were spawned by the American state. Now the Digital Revolution has reached take-off velocity, generating such momentum that - far from depending on state subsidy and sponsorship - it is attacking the authority of the state at multiple levels. It even threatens the integrity of the political process on which that authority rests. The deligitimization of the American state as an economic actor not only looks backward, given its failure to buffer its constituents from the economic consequences of the Digital Revolution. It also reaches forward, as the US abdicates from playing any substantive role in the needed, next Green Revolution, where China is poised to play the leading role.
William H. Janeway has lived a double life of “theorist-practitioner,” according to the legendary economist Hyman Minsky who first applied that term to him twenty-five years ago. In his role as “practitioner,” Bill Janeway has been an active venture capital investor for more than 40 years. During that time he built and led the Warburg Pincus technology investment team that provided financial backing to a series of companies making critical contributions to the internet economy, including BEA Systems, Veritas Software and, more recently, Nuance Communications, the speech recognition company. He remains actively engaged as a senior advisor and managing director at Warburg Pincus.
As a “theorist,” Janeway received a Ph.D in Economics from Cambridge University where he was a Marshall Scholar. His doctoral study on the formulation of economic policy following the Great Crash of 1929 was supervised by Keynes’ leading student, Richard Kahn (author of the foundational paper on “the multiplier.”) Janeway went on to found the Cambridge Endowment for Research in Finance. Currently he serves as a teaching visitor at the Princeton University Economics Department, and visiting scholar in the Economics Faculty of Cambridge University. He is also a regular commentator on Bloomberg TV.
Among his many accomplishments, Janeway is a director of Magnet Systems and O’Reilly Media. He is chairman of the Board of Trustees of Cambridge in America, University of Cambridge and a member of the Board of Managers of the Cambridge Endowment for Research in Finance (CERF). In addition, he serves on the board of directors of the Social Science Research Council and of The Fields Institute for Research in the Mathematical Sciences, and is a co-founder and member of the Governing Board of the Institute for New Economic Thinking (INET). He serves on the Advisory Boards of the Princeton Bendheim Center for Finance and the MIT-Sloan Finance Group. In September 2012, Janeway received the honorary award of Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) for services to education in support of Cambridge University and to UK/US relations.